GEORGETOWN, Texas (AP) — Many Republicans view Ted Cruz as the Texas version of Marco Rubio, the Hispanic U.S. senator from Florida whose conservative philosophy and strong oratory skills helped make him a national tea party force seemingly overnight.
But unlike Rubio, Cruz has never appeared on a ballot. The son of a Cuban immigrant got most of his seasoning for next month's Senate primary by arguing in front of the state Supreme Court as the longest-serving Texas solicitor general.
Cruz has been endorsed by national tea party leaders, placing the race on the national stage. Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst has tried to paint Cruz as an inexperienced upstart who twists the facts. The other top contenders are Tom Leppert and Craig James.
The Texas primary election takes place May 29.
Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.